2017 Toastmasters Convention Prep

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The Toastmasters International Convention is coming next week, and once again I can’t wait to be there! There will be great speakers, awesome contests and lots of seeing good friends again for four full days. Here’s the schedule of events – https://www.toastmasters.org/Events/2017-International-Convention/Schedule If you can’t be there, there will be some live streaming options (Did you know there’s a photo contest […]

Opening – scene of the crime

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As I was working on my speech for the Toastmasters International Speech Contest, I was listening to a storytelling lesson by Darren LaCroix, and he reminded me of a lesson that another World Champion, Ed Tate, teaches: Start your speech at the scene of the crime. He calls this the CSI opening – just like the […]

Clear and Simple

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Darren’s #10 Speaking Mistake was, Not Getting Clear on the Message. (more on his top 10 list here). I was asked recently, “What if I don’t have a point for my speech?” My reply…”Why are you speaking?” In Darren’s session, he made two points about this mistake that I felt were very important: 1. What […]

Toastmasters: Winning your Area Contest

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Just one short week after my club contest win, I competed in our Area Contest. I was representing my club in the International Speech Contest category; I did not compete in the Table Topics category. I retold the story from my club contest, about my experience joining the US Air Force after graduation from High […]

Toastmasters: Winning your Club Contest

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My club held our International Speech and Table Topics contests yesterday (Thursday). After my District win in the Fall Evaluation Contest, I decided to pursue the International Speech trophy this spring, but not table topics. My speech was titled, Things aren’t always as they seem. It was a story about my experience joining the US […]

You must get them involved

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When you speak to a friend or your boss, do you simply talk for 30-minutes without a pause? Do you ask a list of questions and proceed without hearing any answers? Do you read slides to him/her the whole time? If you answered “no”to these questions, you’re probably normal in that regard. But, would the […]

Toastmasters: What does YOUR club need?

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Have you ever gone into a situation expecting a certain outcome, and found that you misjudged the situation completely? Recently, I ran a brainstorming session (Facilitating Discussion manual, project #2) at my Toastmasters club. The problem we were discussing was “Toastmasters Training”, and I was looking for input on what they, our club members, were […]

Five things to have on stage

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I recently read a writing prompt (The Writer’s Idea Book, Jack Heffron) that suggested writing about the 5 things you would want to have with you if you were stranded on a desert island. I thought another interesting approach would be to think about the 5 things I would want with me if I were […]

Good Toastmaster Lessons

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Here’s three important lessons you should know about Toastmasters: 1. Toastmasters has the flexibility to let you choose your path to success. Many Toastmasters fall into one of three groups: getting over your fear of speaking, trying to become a better speaker, and enjoying the experience with friends. Note: you may be in one, two, […]

Toastmasters: Say it ain’t so

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Say it ain’t so! Last night I gave a not-so-well prepared speech at my Toastmasters club. I chose the Competent Communicator (CC) Project #4 – How to say it. My title was How to: The Verbal Busines Card. I’m giving a presentation on networking next week and I needed to tighten this part up a bit. Note: I learned about […]